Weâ€™re here with another interesting topic to read. Donâ€™t you wonder sometimes, what is the ideal sleep time for your child and whether it really makes a difference? Letâ€™s start off with a review on bed times.
Sleep is the primary activity of the brain during early development. Your child must get his age-appropriate sleep. You know how your child is like, if he doesnâ€™t get a proper sleep. According to Harvard Medical school study, sleep time is endogenous. It is set in our biological clock.
How does sleep time get set internally? Wondering how?
Maintaining a consistent bedtime (and wake time) helps keep our internal clock â€œsetâ€. Our bodyâ€™s circadian rhythm passes this message to the brain at the very time. These rhythms are regulated by light and dark. The rhythms begin to develop at about six weeks and this is why newborns have irregular sleep schedules. We can maintain a healthy sleep hygiene only by setting this clock right. So, honor your sleep-wake cycle (biological clock) by going to bed on time.
The amount of sleep your child needs also varies depending on certain factors. Having said this, we have a general guideline given by certified child consultants. Go down to see what time you should put your little one to sleep.
Toddlers (1-2 years): 11-14 hours each day
Active toddlers can experience trouble relaxing and winding down at night. They resist going to bed or have nighttime awakening. This is because of their drive for an increase in their motor, cognitive and social abilities. In addition, development of the child’s imagination can lead to sleep problems.
Sleep Tips for Toddlers:
- Try soothing activities like bath and story time.
- Maintain a consistent bedtime routine.
- Make the bedroom setting cool, quiet and dark and maintain the same environment every day.
- Give a comfort object such as a blanket or stuffed animal so that the child doesnâ€™t experience separation anxiety. A security object can give a child both emotional and tangible support.
Preschoolers (3-5): 10-13 hours each day
As with toddlers, bedtime battles are common with preschoolers. Preschooler sleep problems include procrastinating and resisting bedtime and getting out of their big-kid beds when they wake at night. With further development of imagination, preschoolers commonly experience nighttime fears.
Sleep Tips for Preschoolers:
- Have a relaxing bedtime routine.
- Be consistent in enforcing sleep schedule.
- Using a bed lamp or dim nightlight can comfort kids in the dark.
- Make the bedroom setting the same every night.
Sleeplessness in children can be overcome by changing the bed setting and bedtime habits. Research shows that an early bedtime (between 7:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.) and a consistent, soothing, wind-down routine with no screen time such as TVs, tablets, and the like, will lead to better sleep.